Do you want a verified Twitter account? Then buy some ads

After the flap last week around the fake Wendi Deng getting a verified Twitter account a lot of people have been asking how you go about getting a verified Twitter account. Come on, you know you have.

You probably won’t be surprised to learn that it is apparently quite difficult. Unless that is you happen to be a celebrity or have some good connections. Alternatively, one magazine publisher was told by Twitter that another route to a blue tick is spending more than $15,000 on ads will.

According to a report on Adage this was what was told to Andy Cohn, who is president and publisher of music magazine The Fader, when he asked how he could get his magazine’s Twitter account with its 73,000 followers a coveted little blue tick.

He was told by a Twitter sales representative that the only two paths to Twitter verification are as follows:

1. If you are an account that has had impersonation issues; or

2. An advertiser who has spent at least $15,000 over three months.

That sounds almost like blue ticks for sale. Although the route explained above is clearly not the whole story as many larger media owners have verified accounts and have almost certainly never advertised on Twitter.

“Mr. Cohn pointed out that Twitter is the primary distribution channel for Fader’s digital content and that the credibility of a verified account would be invaluable. But as a small media company, it simply doesn’t have the resources to spend that much on Twitter ads to get it.

“It’s annoying, because I use Tweetdeck and have a column for anything using Fader, and half of these things are people tweeting links to the wrong account,” Mr. Cohn told Ad Age.

If that is the truth, it is something of a shame. This is an issue Twitter needs to sort out as a way of cementing relationships with long term users. It would be an incredibly good piece of PR.